For some reason, it seems to really sting when your child says, “I don’t love you, Daddy”

I think I’m pretty good at not letting what my 3 year old says in the heat of an argument about TV, eggy burritos, or going to bed (our 3 biggest topics of disagreement) really bother me. She will scream, she will throw a torrential downpour of tears and feigned violence upon me, and it’s really stressful and my blood pressure definitely rises, but I am reasonably good at getting her off the ledge without resorting to my own hysterics. That being said, yesterday was the first time she’s ever dropped her trump card, “I DON’T LOVE YOU DADDY!”, and I have to admit, it stung a bit. A lot bit.

Now, I’m as macho as any self-actualized-urban-dad-impersonator (SAUDI) out there, and I was raised not to complain,¹ so I’ve perfected my stoicism in the face of these outbursts. She generally has no idea how upset I am in inside.

Yesterday, however, she was displeased that I was picking her up and not her mother and when I dropped MY usual trump card for everything, “I love you, sweetie²”(seriously, try it on ANYONE in ANY situation, IT WILL WORK), she threw the “I don’t”royal flush response right back in my face. Lame poker references aside, I was floored.

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